Ladies of The SEC, Wear Whatever You Want: The Unfortunate Sequel

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Hello everyone! It’s that time of year again! The leaves are changing, another long-awaited football season has arrived, and another unwanted article about how women need to comply with overtly sexist and outdated “rules” of dress has appeared on our Facebook feeds. This is the THIRD time I have had to write essentially the same article in the past year (the original and the swimsuit edition), so clearly I’m not getting my message across. No time for foreplay. Let’s dive right in.

Our latest offender is McKenzie Kelly, self-proclaimed savior of women’s fashion and Gamecocks fan. Her blog post (most of which is posted below so you don't have to give her clicks) begins with the disclaimer: WARNING: This post might be a little aggressive, but it’s purely to help. ;)

Since Kelly was kind enough to provide a disclaimer, allow me to provide one for my article as well: WARNING: This post might be brutally honest about what women should and shouldn’t wear, because it’s nobody’s damn business. Smiling winky face.

1. STOP WITH THE OVERSIZED FOOTBALL JERSEYS AS DRESSES. Excuse me miss ma’am but are you wearing pants?! Listen, I do love a good football jersey but girls, you need to know how to pair your school spirit jersey with the right bottoms.

I’ve seen the jersey trend. It was the first thing I noticed about gameday apparel. Any gal could slip on a jersey, pop on some cowboy boots and add a shaker or two and look AMAZING with little to no effort. I’m envious of whoever came up with such an iconic and well-recognized look. Who are you to shame gorgeous gals for staying cool and comfortable on a sweltering gameday, all while showing immense support for their favorite team! Here’s a hot tip: what girls wear is not a personal attack on you or your morals, and you should stop taking it as one.

Wrong Answer: Cut up jean shorts that are way too small for you. And yes, we ALL know they are too small for you because your cheeks are showing, Ya nasty. Yes, I get it; it’s freaking hot down here y’all. But that gives you no excuse to be showing your goods. Have some pride.

The beauty of the oversized jersey is that if you don’t feel like wearing pants (which is perfectly acceptable) the length of the jersey works the same way an XXL tee works to cover Norts. And for the record, itty bitty jean cutoffs are about as southern as attire can get. They’re an aspect of almost every single imaginary women in country music. Ever heard of Daisy Dukes? If you want to wear teeny jean shorts, wear them.

Right Answer: Pair your jersey with a cute heel and staple denim skirt (Has to be at least longer than your jersey). Denim is ALL the rage again so now is the time to go out and purchase one. I did yesterday! For the colder months, get you a hot pair of jeans, girl. I love a good pair of light colored jeans with thigh high boots. You will not only be rocking it but you also won’t be showing too much.

Fun fact here that I’m sure you know: High heels are a method of torture girls somehow miraculously put up with night after night because it's a self-esteem and height boost. If a girl doesn't want to wear heels, you don't get to tell her she's trashy without them. And, high heels invariably make any skirt shorter. Flaw one in your solution. Not to mention that for some girls, finding a “staple denim skirt” that is “at least longer than a jersey” many girls specifically bought to be long and comfortable is an impossible task for anyone over 5’6”. As for “a hot pair of jeans”, a comfortable, resilient and flattering pair of jeans are equally as hard to come by, and oftentimes WILDLY expensive (sorry Old Navy). Rather than providing outlandish and expensive solutions to a non-problem, you could come to the conclusion that the majority of humanity has; what a woman has on is no one’s business but her own.

 

2. STOP WEARING MAKE SHIFT CROP TOPS. What are you? Eight years old and still listening to Britney Spears and your mom won’t purchase one for you at Limited Too????????? All too much do I see girls wearing tight cut up t-shirts showing way too much cleave. Fashion Rule #64578: Do not show cleavage and too much leg in the same outfit. I get wanting to “be sexy” but honey, that’s just trashy and you dropped your dignity all over the floor.

First of all, I absolutely still listen to Britney Spears. Girl knows how to build a bop. Also, Limited Too was a godsend and you know it. (Grammatical note here, but I think the phrase you’re looking for is “all too often” rather than "all too much".)

As for your fashion rule (what are the other 64577 rules if you don’t mind me asking? I have a feeling I’m already breaking a lot of them), I’ve heard the old adage about only showing one revealing body part in an ensemble. Good news is the fashion rulebook was thrown out the window in 2008 after we all realized that we could wear a crop top and short shorts without the world imploding. Close one.

 

3. WHAT IS THAT NASTINESS ALL OVER YOUR CHUCKS?! Don’t get me wrong I freaking adore Converse. You should try to wear them anytime because they are cute and comfy. But do not, I REPEAT, do not wear them if they are ridiculously dirty. Yeah, I’m talking to you, freshman. Throw them in the daggum washer and THEN wear them. Stop looking a messy fool.

This is where you start to lose me. Converse are shoes...shoes that are worn on your feet...feet that walk outside and on dirt. Through this reasoning, they have to get dirty at some point. More often than not, I’d assume. And I’ll be damned if I’m going to put my shoes (??) in a washer and spend $1.25 on a load for shoes that will inevitably be just as muddy after one walk through the Quad. Each laundry quarter is precious, and the opinion of a haughty blogger probably won’t stop me from wearing muddy shoes to an outdoor event. Somehow the world turns on.

 

4. ONLY CHEERLEADERS SHOULD WEAR CHEERLEADING SKIRTS!!! I feel like this is one of the newest trends I have seen this year at football games and honestly, it just confuses me. I have no idea why a young woman wants to wear a cheerleading skirt. Are you trying to relive your high school glory days? It is this simple, y’all, the people who should be wearing cheerleading skirts to a football game are cheerleaders and cute 4 year olds.

This is a department I don’t have jurisdiction in, since I’ve never had the coordination or dedication required to be a cheerleader. So I’ll let one of the Crimson Tide cheerleaders respond to this allegation.

"No, why would it [offend me when people wear cheerleading skirts to games who aren’t cheerleaders]? People can wear whatever they want to wear and I don't know why it offends people who aren't wearing it."

There you have it. And it might be hard for the cheerleaders to see what the girls in the stands are wearing when they're being jettisoned into the air at high speeds to cheer loud for the Tide. Just like the rest of us came here to do.

 

I have been holding all of this in since the first game. Here is my last piece of advice: we have held the title of not only the greatest traditions for game day but also the best fashion. Girls, it is up to you to not ruin it. It is time to rethink and revamp your Game day wardrobe. We are not the West Coast, we are not a Northern school, we are the freakin’ SEC, baby. Dress like it.  

McKenzie, I’ll be honest with you. I thought I was done with these articles last year. I foolishly thought that one op-ed would do the trick. But our jobs are far from over. I only hope that one day you (and all of the other women who stand by your statements and have written similar posts) realize that the community that comes to these football games isn’t in it for the fanfare or the fashion. We’re all there because we love our school, we love our team, and we love to express ourselves in a setting that isn’t supposed to be focused on crop tops or Converse. It’s about the people down on the field: the players, the coaches, the assistants, the mascots (most of whom also don’t wear pants), whoever else may be milling around down there that worked hard to bring a great American college sporting event together. I genuinely hope that this is the last article I write on this topic, but I know it’s unlikely. Here is my last piece of advice to YOU, Kelly: Lighten up. Stop worrying so tremendously about what other women are wearing. And just enjoy the damn game.

XOXO,

Someone who knows what she’s talking about since AL.com considers her gameday attire news-worthy

 

All photos submitted by readers or contributed by staff. Final photo pulled from Al.com. (Ben Flanagan)

About The Author

Sarah is from Indianapolis, Indiana and is currently studying Telecommunications and Film at the University of Alabama. Along with her broadcasting major, she is also working towards a creative writing minor. She enjoys writing to her friends back home, caring for her hamster named Pasta, dancing around to Ellie Goulding and cultivating her cacti garden! In her spare time, Sarah can be found in the library with her head in a book or on the quad petting dogs.